Why SEO Shouldn’t Be An Afterthought

Have you ever questioned whether or not you need to invest in SEO now, or if you can simply hold off until your company scales? This is a common question that I hear all too often when talking with business owners. In this post, my goal is to share with you a few reasons why it’s critical that you start investing in SEO today and not wait. Out of respect for the privacy of our clients, I have altered the names and company information associated with any specific examples that I’ve included in this post.

Before we dive in, I’d like to introduce myself. My name is Chayden Young and I’m the Accounts Director here at Epic Marketing. You’re likely wondering why Epic’s Accounts Director is writing an article on SEO. That’s a great question! In addition to managing our account management team, I also spend a portion of my day talking with prospective clients and am typically their first point of contact with Epic. Being on the front lines, I get the opportunity to learn so much about what companies are already doing to market themselves and can quickly see many of the opportunities in front of them.

I recently had a new client meeting with John, a business owner looking to expand his company. John had been working incredibly hard to establish his brand and a reputation for quality work and great service. I asked John what he was doing from an SEO side to promote his services. His response, while not so unusual, is representative of a widespread and all too common concern. John responded, “I’m not really doing a lot with SEO. I’m not really big enough to worry about it and have heard it’s a waste of money.”

After listening to John’s perspective on SEO, I realized that there are businesses out there that still don’t truly understand the value of SEO. Search traffic can be one of the most valuable marketing avenues a company can pursue. While the size and scale of these search campaigns can vary greatly, you should be investing in a base SEO strategy for your site. Your competition isn’t stopping SEO efforts and you can’t afford to ignore the value of search traffic to your site.

“you need to be investing in SEO today”

John and I continued talking and discussed why he hadn’t been doing SEO. He said, “when I first started my business, I was under the impression that SEO was something only large companies did. I didn’t really see the value in it. I’ve got a couple of friends that got burned by one of those $250 SEO packages.” A warning to those who might be tempted to go with the ultra-cheap SEO companies out there, It’s not worth the risk. Companies charging extremely low rates keep their prices low by providing a low-quality service that can harm your site. After being on the subject for a while, we came to the conclusion that John needed more information on SEO and specifically how it should play into his mix of customer acquisition channels.

Now I was on a mission to prove to John the value of SEO and how a quality SEO service can elevate his business to a new level. Returning to John’s point on how he believed only large companies focus on SEO, I knew that I needed to start there. Why does it seem like SEO is something that big successful companies focus on? It’s because it works! Aligning your website content with people searching for your products and services is one of the best ways to capture high-quality leads or direct sales. These people are looking for you, why not make it easy for them to find you? The value derived from this strategy can be immense and in the long run, cost significantly less than a paid advertising approach. SEO is an investment in your web presence, not a flash in the pan that builds no sustained value over time.

At our next meeting, I came a little more prepared. This time I brought an in-depth search report of people that were looking for his services on a monthly basis. It finally hit him how important it was for him to try and capture a small portion of this search market. He decided that he couldn’t wait any longer, because the longer he waited, the more he fell behind his competition.

We helped John build a new site that was optimized for SEO from the start. After his site was launched, he started to receive not only an uptick in organic traffic but a noticeable increase in leads from his site.

This story has an awesome ending for John. Unfortunately, there are a lot of companies out there that still let SEO be an afterthought. I don’t care if you just invented a brand new technology that nobody has heard of or your industry is as old as the dinosaurs, you need to be investing in SEO today, and if you don’t know where to start, you need to partner with someone who can generate the right results for you.

Bite Into An Epic SAMY

Utah Business magazine’s annual SAMY (Sales & Marketer of the Year) awards celebrate the state’s top marketing talent. Highlighting individuals and teams in Utah that go above and beyond in their efforts to deliver great marketing to companies, the SAMYs showcase some of the best thinking in the state when it comes to messaging that truly impacts a business’s bottom line.

Utah Business has been using their SAMY Awards to highlight marketing professionals in the state for over a decade. Categories like,” Best Social Media Campaign”, and “Marketing Professionals of the Year” highlight great work that has come from Utah-based talent, as well as individual players in Utah’s marketing world that have had massive national (or worldwide) success at creatively solving marketing problems. The awards spotlight how this top marketing talent is making a difference for brands that expand well beyond our state’s humble borders.

Epic’s win for “Best Use of Video” was for a spot created to launch “VASA Studio” for big-box gym VASA Fitness. Expanding their personal training offering, VASA Studio competes with the training style and experience smaller, boutique gyms offer. Our VASA Studio work showcases the one-of-a-kind experience VASA members get when they step into a Studio class. To set it apart from the other group fitness classes VASA offers, we amped up the music and drama—focusing on the intensity, excitement, and love of a great workout only the VASA Studio experience can deliver.

When VASA first approached us with their new premium gym experience, we knew it needed a name that showcased the concept as unique to their other class offerings and helped to highlight the smaller, more intimate—and more intense—nature of the workouts. Landing on the term “Studio” as a moniker we focused on capturing the boutique, elite-level feeling of the classes.

For messaging, we knew VASA Studio would be competing with more boutique gyms where members were used to getting quite a bit of individual attention. Studio would be no different; so we focused our message on highlighting the small class size, the state-of-the-art equipment (Woodway treadmills, Myzone heart rate monitors), and the intensity you could expect when you walked into a Studio workout.

With the cornerstones of naming and messaging laid, we moved on to Handling identity design, marketing materials, environmental graphics, as well as the video production work. Our task with video became how to show the Studio experience. How do you recreate the visceral feeling of sweat, energy, and excitement that Studio would represent? In shooting the video spots, we choose dramatic red lighting to match VASA’s brand colors. We stylized the Studio experience to spotlight our models and their silhouettes; not only showing the intensity of their workouts, but bringing attention to the individual’s experience and giving Studio the premium feel it had within the VASA brand.

Our work was a massive success. Not only did the rollout generate big buzz for VASA and increase memberships, but it was so well received that VASA decided they would incorporate the Studio model—and Epic’s campaign—into all their fitness centers nationally. Our efforts helped launch VASA Studio as the premium Studio experience it is, allowing the new offering to stand out with sleek, innovative creative that also helped to elevate the entire VASA brand. Our work highlights Studio as an exclusive experience that makes VASA gyms a destination not just for causal gym-goers, but for people who take their fitness a little more seriously and want classes that cater to their level and the individual instruction they’re used to.

As a full service agency just south of Salt Lake City, we’ve delivered advertising solutions for local and national businesses and brands for over fifteen years. Our diverse group of clients spans multiple industries, and we’ve built the capabilities to service our client’s needs across multiple channels and platforms; including broadcast, digital, print, and other media. Our group is focused on delivering the creative and strategy businesses need to grow, and we cater our services to the unique and individual needs of each client. Our philosophy is centered around delivering messages that create strong customer relationships, with an emphasis on consistency and a focus on brand planning, messaging, and deployment.